Pornographic spam Emails and harmful or illegal web content

Published 12/05/2004 10:04   |    Updated 05/03/2008 10:58

How should I deal with pornographic spam Emails and harmful or illegal web content?

Unfortunately a large percentage of spam emails contain pornographic or disturbing images. While this is distasteful it may not be illegal, and therefore there is often nothing the police can do.


If you receive spam of this nature, never open the email or use any offered 'unsubscribe' facility. This simply tells the sender that they have a valid email address which they will use again.


If you believe that the spam (or the URLs that it refers to) contains potentially illegal material e.g. child pornography, then this should be reported to the Internet Watch Foundation (of which BT is a member). They will take the matter up and deal with their counterparts all round the world.


You will find details of how to make a report on the Internet Watch Foundation website. If you feel unhappy giving your personal details then you may report the matter anonymously.



Irish Internet Service Providers are working together to stamp out child pornography on the Internet. The Internet Service Providers Association of Ireland ( has introduced a hotline service to combat this problem.


The service was launched in November 1999 to provide an anonymous reporting service to members of the public who accidentally uncover illegal child pornography on the Internet. The service is supported and funded by the Internet Service Provider Association of Ireland who are eager to ensure their Internet Services are not used to spread illegal child pornography on the Internet.


Parents or guardians who have concerns about unsuitable content should contact the National Hotline immediately. This hotline has been specifically set up to combat child pornography on the Internet.


You can telephone the hotline 24 hours a day on 1890 610 710 or email


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